Nothing to bank on

Print edition : February 03, 2017

Wife of Asokan, who died on the premises of a bank at Tirumakkottai village, beside his picture. Photo: B. Velankanni Raj

The death of Asokan, 56, of Pudukkudi, near Tirumakkottai near Mannargudi, Tiruvarur district, comes across as an irony of life. Asokan died on December 2 on the premises of the Indian Overseas Bank at Tirumakkottai where he had gone to get money for the jewellery he had pledged for farming. There was a big crowd in the bank thanks to the Narendra Modi government’s demonetisation move. He was standing in the queue for a couple of hours when he collapsed and died.

His wife, Vedavalli, said, “There is no water in the canal now [Periya Vaikkal, fed by the water from the Tirumeni lake]. There is no harvest because the entire crop has withered.” The couple has a son and two daughters. “Our plans were to educate our children because we could not depend on farming. There was no steady income from it,” Vedavalli said wistfully. “There is no joy in our lives. The bank officials are insisting on rules when we told them to return our jewellery.”

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